Koalra Carry On As Something Fails Epically

The Portland post-rockers unspool a foreboding anthem for our tumultuous times.

Koalra gamely and grimly march into the encroaching darkness of their striking and spellbinding new single and video Something Fails — showcasing today on Tinnitist.

The latest single from the prolific Portland-via-Chicago band’s seventh studio release Disasterclass, the ominously titled Something Fails succeeds thatnks to its majestic melding of brains, beauty and brawn. With darkly twanging guitar and bass melodies set against stoic, solidly marching four-by-four drums — all topped by atmospheric, stirring vocals that lead into a soaring, inspirational solo — the five-minute track explores a netherworld somewhere between post-punk, goth, art-rock, shoegaze, dream-pop and just about any other alternative genre you’d care to toss into that kitchen sink. Illustrated by cheekily manipulated footage from the iconic German expressionist silent-film Metropolis, Something Fails resonates as an alternative anthem for our terrifying times, bravely holding its head high and resiliently moving onward and upward into an foreboding future fuelled by entropy and eventual collapse.

Which is, of course, just how they planned it. With this latest release, the ever-evolving band — whose sound embraces everything from the fuzz-fueled guitars and loose rhythms of Dinosaur Jr. to the experimental soundscapes Sonic Youth and the darkly melodic beauty of The Cure — have once again upped the ante with a darker and more epic tone. The feel is characterized by a blend of various elements that create a unique sonic signature. The albums first single and title track is full of lush and reverberating guitar work, a pulsating rhythm that can feel both hypnotic and driving and a feeling that will resonate with many listeners who appreciate their ability to create a unique atmosphere that feels both emotionally resonant and musically engaging.

Koalra have come a long way in a short time. After forming in their native Chicago, the ’90s-influenced four-piece released their self-titled debut in December of 2019. The eight-track album was a noise-fest of uplifting, yet thrashing guitar tracks full of grungy melodies. In 2020, Koalra moved on to more introspective themes with the followup EP Surprise Lights, a change inspired by the steadily growing uncertainty of our time.

Later that year, they released The Wakes, which featured more hopeful themes in tracks like Hold On and Lifting. Early 2021’s Into The Everything found the band dipping into new wave territory with the glimmering shades of Torture and the cathartic gloom of The Scene. And the 2021 release of Love Songs To Remind Us That We Can’t Stand Each Other is a collection of tracks fuelled by the disenchantment of our current social and political climate.

For their fifth release, they dove deeply into the kosmische-Musik side of their multifaceted identity, with a never one to shy against social and political album entitled The fires burned everything we had. When the dust settles, They will do it again. Next, Koalra unleashed a collection of odds, ends and extras titled Nihilism and Analog Tape, an assembly of melancholy noise-rock with upbeat psych-vibes sporting the single Center of the World.

Watch the video for Something Fails above, listen to the Disasterclass album below, order the vinyl from their Bandcamp page, and get in step with Koalra on their Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.